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HBO offers free premieres of 'Girls' and 'Veep' after pay-TV debut

HBO's "Girls"

HBO will offer the premiere episodes of its new comedies "Girls" and "Veep" for free after the shows make their debut on the pay cable channel.

The episodes will be made available for a month, not only on HBO's own website HBO.com, but also on YouTube, DailyMotion and other online platforms.

"Girls," which is about four college graduates struggling to get by in New York City, has its HBO debut Sunday and then will go online for free Monday through May 14. "Veep," a political satire starring Julia Louis Dreyfus, launches on HBO on Sunday, April 22, and then will be online from April 23 through May 21.

HBO's decision to offer free episodes of "Girls" and "Veep" demonstrates how competitive the television landscape has become. Once seen as the premier source of cutting-edge programming, HBO is facing greater competition from pay-TV rivals Showtime and Starz and, increasingly, basic cable channels such as AMC and FX.

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-- Joe Flint

Photo: HBO's "Girls." Credit: Mark Seliver / MCT

 
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